Needle lace is not always an embroidery technique, although embroidery stitches are used on most types of needle lace. Lace can be made a number of ways – with bobbins, tapes, crochet hooks, and with regular needles. Needle lace is lace made with needle and thread, normally on a fabric ground and often with parts of the fabric cut away. Some types of needle lace are not worked on fabric, but rather on paper or tissue, and once removed from the tissue, the resulting piece of needle lace is then attached to the fabric. Some types of needle lace are made on a net ground (either square netting like filet netting, or tulle). And some types of needle lace are actually a combination of bobbin lace with stitching on it.
There are many types of needle lace and many names for it, among them Rose Point, Point de Gaze, Ruskin Lace, Armenian lace, Filet lace, Reticella, Punto in Aria, Gros Point de Venise, Alencon Lace, and on and on. All have their different characteristics and some are unbelievable detailed and fine.
Needle lace is often included in whitework, as inserts or edging.